On a cold, rainy Saturday night, I was walking to the corner store to buy milk when I saw a bunch of cars driving by me. There was a lot of smoke coming out of the engines, and I began to cough and have a horrible feeling in my stomach. The smoke was gray and looked like it carried dirt particles in it. It smelled putrid like burnt plastic. I felt like throwing up.
According to the Union of Concerned Scientists, cars pollute the air by burning fossil fuels. To better understand car pollution in Boston and the impact it is having on our environment, we need to understand the health risks. The effects of driving a car in our current environment are dangerous because car pollution affects our lungs and it increases the risk of diseases like asthma and heart disease. Car pollution can also cause cancer, breathing problems and eye irritation that damages your vision.
Cars have been affecting us for a long time, especially near highways and where there is a lot of traffic. In some cities, the pollution levels are higher, like New York City and Los Angeles. Over a 24-hour period, air pollution in Los Angeles measures PM2.5 36(µg/m3) whereas in Boston it is 8.9(µg/m3), according to an EPA air quality report from 2018. LA has a lot of pollution because there are a lot more cars than in Boston. While Boston has fewer cars than LA, car pollution still affects us.
Cars have the most impact on air quality, and when people breathe the air coming from the tailpipes it goes directly to the lungs. According to sciencing.com, the exhaust is dangerous to infants and people that suffer heart disease because it affects the blood’s ability to move oxygen. Car pollution also affects the weather, according to National Geographic. Smog created by car pollution limits visibility and acid rain can damage vehicles and buildings.
We should try to help out future generations by thinking deeply about the way we use cars. One thing we can do is drive electric cars because that won’t damage the environment. Also, we can be more careful about how we use normal cars. If we all commit to not abusing cars, like using them to race, then we all have a higher chance of living a long life. Also, people can choose not to use cars at all and instead ride a bike or just walk.
At the end of the day, car pollution is dangerous for the environment because it’s smoke that we breathe. Some people might not care about the world and people in it beside themselves, but it's important to take care of the environment and people. If we don't take this seriously, then a lot of kids can get diseases or become sick.